An investment group focusing on UK robotics and artificial intelligence (AI) start-ups has launched its second British Robotics Seed Fund, following on closely from its first, which closed to new applications last year.
Britbots has teamed up with Sapphire Capital Partners, a tax management firm, to help run its latest robotics and artificial intelligence fund.
The first Britbots funding scheme was ploughed into six high-potential start-ups.
Companies can now apply for 2018 funding from Britbots, which is "predominantly focused on SEIS-qualifying investment opportunities". The organisation claimed that the fund delivers "the most significant tax benefits to investors".
It added that "there will be scope for the fund to make a number of investments under the EIS scheme when there are scale-up opportunities for existing portfolio companies".
According to Britbots, the UK robotics industry is booming, and it's looking to work with entrepreneurs and academics on exciting "high-value businesses that can deliver superior returns for investors".
The organisation said that it is providing support in "a climate where returns on listed investments are constrained". However, it believes that UK firms can benefit from the global adoption of robotics and AI.
"Opportunities for significant investment returns in this sector are becoming widespread, with more than 50 robotics and automation companies being acquired over the last year, for a total consideration of more than £20 billion," said the firm.
The second fund will focus on "world-class entrepreneurs with global product opportunities". Britbots is particularly interested in autonomous robots and machine learning systems.
"Britbots meets with hundreds of businesses each year and has already earmarked a number of exciting businesses as potential investments for the fund," said the firm in a statement.
Dominic Keen, founder of Britbots, said: "I'm delighted to be able to launch our second robotics fund. It is the best way for an investor to get access to mixed basket of shares in the exciting robotics and AI growth companies that are shaping our economy for the decades ahead."
Thiago Azevedo, of ZOA Robotics, was a recipient of last year's fund. He said: "The British Robotics Seed Fund is unique in providing a specialist funding source for robotics entrepreneurs like myself.
"In addition to the investment provided, they've taken an active role in business, using their expertise to focus our strategy and execution."
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